We’ve all had those moments where our vacation doesn’t go as planned. And you feel frustrated, tired and maybe a little bit angry that things aren’t working out as you had expected. So what strategies could we use to get back to gratitude when the sh*t hits the fan?
As you may know, I have been traveling a lot over the past 2 months and my gratitude practice has really come in handy because there were definitely some more challenging moments that we faced on every single trip. However, I will attest that overall, my experiences were pretty amazing and I didn’t experience one single plane delay in 10 flights. I truly believe that by having an attitude of gratitude, keeping a positive outlook and treating others with kindness and respect sends out amazing energy everywhere you go – which leads to more amazing experiences in general.
So what do I do when things aren’t going well? I’ll have to admit that I’m not always the one with the attitude of gratitude first. My husband and daughter are both great at reminding me sometimes to shift my mood. Here are some of the strategies we use:
- Remember that everything happens in Divine timing. And what I mean by this is when you are frustrated that you are still waiting for your room and it’s almost 5 pm on check-in day, there must be some Divine reason why your room isn’t ready yet. My husband reminded me of this when we were waiting for our room. It helped me to let go of some of the frustration and simply allow myself to be present in that moment – to notice that even though we were inconvenienced, we were still in Florida and still on vacation.
- Assume that everyone is doing their best, at the time and in that particular situation. We were out for dinner for my birthday and our server at the bar had a very sour attitude and didn’t smile once. I was kind to her and told her that we weren’t in a rush (the bar area was very busy when we arrived), however that never changed her attitude. I decided that it wasn’t going to affect how I was feeling and I simply assumed that for whatever reason, that was the best she had to offer at that moment. We were rewarded with the BEST server when we arrived at our table. She smiled the moment she greeted us and ended up joining us for some dancing!
- Be grateful for the little things. My daughter is amazing at this. We have worked on building her attitude of gratitude for many years, and now that she is 6, we can see how it has shaped the way she looks at different situations. After several challenges with our delayed room in Florida, we went out for dinner. It was a steak house and she loves steak, but there wasn’t a steak on the kids menu. She kindly asked the server if they could make her a steak, and the chef said yes. When her steak arrived, she was so excited and grateful! It was absolutely adorable. And it made all of us forget the inconveniences of the day.
- Ask for what you want or need. Often when we are on vacation, the challenges arise because we don’t ask for what we want. Most resorts and restaurant will gladly help you out whenever possible if you simply ask. A big source of frustration for me was the lack of vegan choices on the Disney dining plan and the restaurants we had selected. However, on two occasions, the chef made a special dinner for me because the server had mentioned that there were no good options. That was amazing and I’m sure that it also gave the chef a chance to be creative and have fun!
- Continue your gratitude practice. If you’ve already got a daily gratitude practice at home, take it with you on vacation. My gratitude journal is so important to me that I refuse to pack it in my suitcase, it’s always in my carry on. And now that my daughter has her own gratitude journal, we take hers along too – with our special pens! There are many of my daily rituals that I’m not able to keep up with on vacation, and that’s ok. However my daily gratitude journaling is non-negotiable. Even if you simply wake up with gratitude every day, that’s a wonderful way to continue your gratitude practice on vacation.
There will always be challenges when we travel, and that’s part of the adventure. I am so incredibly grateful for all of the travel adventures I have had in my life. Whether you are going away for the weekend to a cottage or flying around the world, make sure you stay grounded in gratitude wherever you. And whichever time zone you wake-up in, make sure you wake up with gratitude.
Monday March 27 – I’ll be speaking at MoMondays in Niagara Falls. Details to follow.
Wed March 29 – Our annual 30 Day Whole Body Detox event at the Burlington Golf and Country Club, 6:30 – 9:30 pm. Save the date!
Tues April 18 – I’ll be speaking at a USANA event in Edmonton. Details to follow.
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